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Preserving Nature for Future Generations

Polk’s Environmental Lands Program acquires, preserves, protects, manages and restores endangered and environmentally sensitive lands, water resources, and important wildlife habitats. Acquired properties are used for passive outdoor recreational purposes provided that such uses will not disturb or degrade the environmental quality for which the site was acquired.

Polk County Accepting Applications for CLASAC Members

In November 2022, voters in Polk County approved a referendum for a property tax to generate funds for land purchases over a 20-year period. Polk County voters enacted a similar tax in 1994, and the resulting revenue created the county’s Environmental Lands Program, leading to purchases of what is now Circle B Bar Reserve and 10 other properties open to the public.

To facilitate the purchase of new lands, the Polk County Board of County Commissioners has approved the creation of the Polk County Conservation Land Acquisition Selection Advisory Committee (CLASAC). 

As an advisory committee, CLASAC members will review potential Polk County land acquisitions for conservation purposes and make recommendations to the Board. They will consider the land’s water resources, its natural communities and landscape values, its plants and animals, its value to humans and the practicality of managing the land. 

CLASAC will consist of representatives from the agricultural community, environmental groups, outdoor recreation groups, sportsman groups and professionals with water resource and land management/use experience. CLASAC members also will be responsible for commenting on proposed land management plans. They will serve four-year terms and may serve successive terms without limitation.

Applications for Polk County residents interested in serving on the committee may be downloaded from the link below. Applications must be returned to gayesharpe@polk-county.net by close of business on Wednesday, March 15. Members will be selected by the BoCC in May.

CLASAC Application

Begin Your Adventure Here

Whether you’re planning a hike, attending an education class or exploring Polk’s Nature Discovery Center, you can explore what Polk County’s Environmental Lands have to offer here.

Student Explorer Studying a Science Experiment


Whether you are interested in seeing the ancient beach sand dunes, all the unique plants and animals, or looking to explore the Green Swamp with its majestic cypress domes, Polk County's Environmental Lands Program invites you to discover Florida's true nature.

Explorer Hiking a Trail


Be prepared. Knowing what to bring and expect on your visit will help you have a great experience.

Polk's Nature Discovery Center


Visit the hub of Polk County's Environmental Lands Program. Visit and discover the water, wildlife, and wilderness of Polk County.

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